MLB, players union spat continues: 2020 season seems less likely by the day


(© Sean Gladwell –

The MLBPA responded to the latest proposal from the league to play a 2020 season by requesting that owners tell them when to show up to work.

Now MLB wants more.

This time, in the form of a waiver from the union of any claims that management has violated the March agreement setting out terms for a 2020 season.

“The owners are 100 percent committed to getting baseball back on the field,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred told ESPN in an interview on Monday. “Unfortunately, I can’t tell you that I’m 100 percent certain that’s gonna happen.”

So, there’s that, and then this from MLBPA Executive Director Tony Clark:

“Players are disgusted that after Rob Manfred unequivocally told Players and fans that there would ‘100 percent’ be a 2020 season, he has decided to go back on his word and is now threatening to cancel the entire season. Any implication that the Players Association has somehow delayed progress on health and safety protocols is completely false, as Rob has recently acknowledged the parties are ‘very, very close.’

“This latest threat is just one more indication that Major League Baseball has been negotiating in bad faith since the beginning. This has always been about extracting additional pay cuts from Players and this is just another day and another bad faith tactic in their ongoing campaign.”

Where things stand now: MLB is proposing a 72-game season with players’ salaries paid out 70 percent of their pro-rated level, basically, 31.1 percent of the contract value.

The March 26 agreement had set out that players would receive full pro-rated salaries, and that the league would be obliged to play the most games possible.

The terms there seem pretty clear and set in stone, and not at all what MLB is now trying to get players to agree to.

Which is why each passing day ends with it seeming less likely that there will be an MLB season in 2020.

Story by Chris Graham


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